09 March 2010

The Most Untouched Block in SoHo?

I was walking through SoHo yesterday and feeling pretty well alienated. Chain store after luxury store after chain-luxury store. Unless you're on a shopping mission and have a credit card in your pocket with a high limit, there's little reason for a New Yorker to hang out in this neighborhood.

Then I turned the corner at Prince and West Broadway, and I breathed a little easier. Could the short block of Prince between West Broadway and Thompson be the most untouched in this very-changed area? At the corner of Thompson and Prince, you have the old standby bar Milady's, that hangs on year after year, despite a lack of glitz and glam. Across the street is the old M & O Market ("Imported and Domestic Products"), one of the few sizable groceries in the neighborhood.

A couple doors down is the frowsy Cafe Borgia, pretending since 1975 that its still 1963. And across the street is Vesuvio Bakery, which, though it's now a branch of City Bakery, still retains its classic facade and uses its basement ovens. The stretch has a so much more relaxed atmosphere that the surrounding blocks.


Trish said...

I live at 124 Thompson (where M&O) is. It was worrying when the Swatch store opened on the corner of West Broadway. I was afraid big brands were going to creep over and change the atmosphere. But so far we seem to be holding them at bay :)

Ken Mac said...

walk up prince turn right on macdougal down two blocks is soho's most untouched tenement set to collapse almost any day now. Former mob social club, it now sits decaying and rotting. thank god